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Michael Cohen's mystery third client is Sean Hannity

 
 
Reply Mon 16 Apr, 2018 03:52 pm
Michael Cohen's mystery third client is Sean Hannity
By Kara Scannell and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN
Updated 5:23 PM ET, Mon April 16, 2018


New York (CNN)- Donald Trump's personal attorney Michael Cohen also represents Fox News host Sean Hannity, Cohen's attorneys said Monday afternoon.

Cohen had told the court earlier he had at least 10 clients between 2017 and 2018, including the President, and the former GOP fundraiser Elliot Broidy who acknowledged paying $1.6 million to a Playboy model with whom he had an affair.

The disclosure came in a hearing where Judge Kimba Wood also ordered prosecutors to turn over material seized in a raid last week to Cohen's legal team so they can say how much they believe is subject to attorney-client privilege.

Cohen's lawyers had publicly identified Trump and Broidy as clients, but revealed Hannity's name only after the judge ordered them to.

On his radio show Monday, Hannity said, "I never retained him in the traditional sense" and said he believed his conversations about legal questions were confidential.

"I've known Michael a long, long time. Let me be very clear to the media. Michael never represented me in any matter. I never retained him in the traditional sense as retaining a lawyer. I never received an invoice from Michael. I never paid legal fees to Michael," Hannity said.

"But I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective," he added. "And I assume that those conversations were attorney-client confidential."

Hannity added, "not one of any issue I ever dealt with Michael Cohen on ever, ever involved a matter between me and any third party."
Fox News host Shepard Smith acknowledged Hannity's connection to Cohen on the air Monday.

"We just spoke with his publicist here at Fox News who says that he says they have been friends a long time, he never denied that he was his lawyer, that he did some legal work for him along the way, and that's the extent of that," Smith said.

Prosecutors must turn over docs
Wood ruled prosecutors have to turn over the seized material from last Monday's raid to Cohen's attorneys so they can tell the judge how much of it might be subject to attorney client privilege.

Cohen's lawyer can then share subsets of the material to Trump and the Trump Organization.

Wood indicated she would after prosecutors and Cohen come back with an estimate of the volume of material that would have to be reviewed by a "taint team" or special master.

The judge asked both sides to provide four names each as potential special masters, but made clear she has not decided that will be her final decision.
Cohen declined to comment while leaving the courtroom.

Cohen's lawyers have called the raid "completely unprecedented."

"This is perhaps the most highly publicized search warrant in the history of recent American criminal jurisprudence. It is paramount that the review of Mr. Cohen's data and documents be handled in such a way as to eliminate, as much as possible, even the 'appearance of unfairness,'" they argued in a letter to Wood.

Late Sunday, lawyers for Trump also asked for copies of the seized material to be turned over so the President could review them for confidential information.

Prosecutors with the US attorney's office in Manhattan said they have a "filter team" of lawyers separate from those involved in the investigation in place to review the documents for any communications between Cohen and his clients.

Prosecutor Thomas McKay told the judge during a sidebar session on Friday, "This is a fast-moving investigation. We are devoting a large amount of resources to the whole case but, in particular, to our filter team to get this review done very quickly."

Cohen acknowledged that seven of the 10 clients he had in 2017 to 2018 involved business consulting over legal advice. He also listed in broad terms his legal work in the dozen years before he began working for the Trump Organization in 2007.

Last week, prosecutors said in a court filing that they have been investigating Cohen for months "for criminal conduct that largely centers on his personal business dealings."

They also said that Cohen appeared to have few clients other than the President and they had not uncovered any emails between the two suggesting the potential risk of violating attorney client privilege was slim.

The search warrant authorizing the raid indicated prosecutors were looking into potential violations of bank fraud, wire fraud, and campaign finance violations, sources told CNN. The warrant also sought information that included payments allegedly made to keep women silent about affairs with Trump more than a decade ago.

It also emerged Cohen facilitated a $1.6 million payment to a former Playboy model who said she became pregnant from a relationship with Broidy, who was the deputy chair of the Republican National Committee until he resigned Friday when the payment became public.

Broidy admitted to the relationship in a statement but did not address whether he impregnated the woman. He said Cohen reached out to him after being contacted by Keith Davidson, an attorney representing the woman, and said he retained Trump's lawyer "after he informed me about his prior relationship with Mr. Davidson."

Davidson also represented former adult film actress Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, a former playmate. Both women claimed to have affairs with Trump, who has denied the allegations.

This story has been updated.
CNN's Gloria Borger contributed to this report.

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Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 833 • Replies: 40

 
tsarstepan
 
  4  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 05:36 am
@Blickers,
Can you say Massive Conflict of Interest? I can.
tsarstepan
 
  2  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 06:10 am
@tsarstepan,
0 Replies
 
revelette1
 
  3  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 09:34 am
@tsarstepan,
I didn't consider that angle, doubt I would know to do so. But is the conflict of interest why Cohen and his lawyer went such pains to keep Hannity a secret? Have they been talking about it on Fox news since the story broke?
tsarstepan
 
  7  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 11:05 am
@revelette1,
revelette1 wrote:

I didn't consider that angle, doubt I would know to do so. But is the conflict of interest why Cohen and his lawyer went such pains to keep Hannity a secret? Have they been talking about it on Fox news since the story broke?

Of course Hannity has been defending Cohen against the FBI investigation on Fox News. He was doing everything in his power to discredit the investigation because he was afraid that his previously secret relationship would be revealed.

Heck, we will likely hear about his acts of sexual misconduct somewhat soon after the initial revelation.
revelette1
 
  3  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 12:57 pm
@tsarstepan,
I meant, sorry for not making it clear, has Fox News been talking about Sean Hannity being the third mystery client? Has Hannity?
ehBeth
 
  5  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 03:46 pm
@revelette1,
After a brief mention yesterday, Fox has tried to dodge the story - other than slamming the judge as a Clinton partisan.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 07:12 pm
@Blickers,
In the words of our illustrious former veep Joe Biden: Big ******* Deal!

God forbid Hannity, Carlson or Limbaugh snarted and stained their pants and somehow it became public. You idiots would start a thread on it and go on and on about how important a development it was.

Jesus Christ!

Rolling Eyes
Blickers
 
  4  
Reply Tue 17 Apr, 2018 09:04 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
To quote tsarstepan:
Quote:
Of course Hannity has been defending Cohen against the FBI investigation on Fox News. He was doing everything in his power to discredit the investigation because he was afraid that his previously secret relationship would be revealed.

Heck, we will likely hear about his acts of sexual misconduct somewhat soon after the initial revelation.


There is the sheer duplicity of Hannity having Cohen on repeatedly as a guest supposedly giving the inside scoop of what's happening in the Trump story without revealing to the viewers that Cohen is also Hannity's attorney. But as tsarstepan's post mentions, this also means that Cohen had records of Hannity's cases as well, which records are now in Mueller's hands. And since Cohen's "lawyering" thus far seems to largely involve paying off women not to reveal liasons with Cohen's clients, this might well end up being quite newsworthy indeed.
0 Replies
 
Blickers
 
  4  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 02:16 am
Just thought I'd post this video. It's a bunch of lefty commentators laughing about Sean Hannity's attempts at defending himself over concealing the fact that Cohen was his lawyer. I have to admit, the laughter was contagious.

0 Replies
 
revelette1
 
  5  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 06:40 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Quote:
In the words of our illustrious former veep Joe Biden: Big ******* Deal!

Cohen and his lawyer opened the door to this being a big deal by making such a mystery of his name in the first place. Why would it be embarrassing to Hannity to have his revealed as being 'associated' with Cohen?
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  5  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 06:59 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
You don't see a problem with journalistic integrity here?

If a journalist is reporting a story in which they have a personal connection, they should mention this. That's the issue for me.
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 08:52 am
It’s always been a huge issue for me, too. I think journalists should be legally required to disclose their campaign contributions and social/money trail relationships with every politician they report on, under penalty of losing their license to work as a journalist.

That one rule would make this a different country.
Finn dAbuzz
 
  -2  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 08:57 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

You don't see a problem with journalistic integrity here?

If a journalist is reporting a story in which they have a personal connection, they should mention this. That's the issue for me.



1) I don't really consider Hannity a journalist. He, like a great many news personalities on the right & left, is a propagandist

2) I think the term journalistic integrity is, for the most part, a joke.

Overwhelmingly, the people throwing darts at Hannity on this don't give a rat's ass about journalistic integrity. They hate Trump - Hannity loves Trump - ergo they hate Hannity (even more than they did before Trump) You've never seen these people (including Blickers and tsarstepan) bitch about journalistic integrity when the malefactor was a journalist from the NY Times, WAPO, or CNN.

Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 08:58 am
@Lash,
But of course, they are not licensed
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 09:00 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
There should be some reliable censure for dirty journalists. Everybody’s getting paid.

Obviously, every entity that formerly relied on ‘professional integrity’ is now on the take...which is why our society is imploding.
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 09:01 am
Out of curiosity: Does everyone, after posting one comment in a thread, get a message from the site that you have to wait 20 seconds or more to post a second in case you are a robot or spammer? Wouldn't you think Robert could whitelist longtime members who are clearly neither?
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 09:03 am
@Lash,
I agree but can you imagine the wailing about freedom of the press if someone outside their clan proposed it? As far as I can tell, no one within their clan ever has.
tsarstepan
 
  4  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 09:04 am
@Lash,
A major reason I adore NPR is their OCD over transparency.

NPR host sneezes two blocks away from ... let's say Goldman Sachs executive. GS executive says Bless you. NPR will always disclose ... no matter how trivial the arrangement if the story they broadcasting about Goldman Sachs, "For full disclosure, there was that one time I sneezed and so and so greeted me with Bless you."

Fox News almost NEVER discloses any financial relationships which clearly color their editorial and alleged news stories regarding corporations and individuals they are trying to report on. They are the complete opposite of transparency.
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Apr, 2018 09:06 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Finn dAbuzz wrote:

Out of curiosity: Does everyone, after posting one comment in a thread, get a message from the site that you have to wait 20 seconds or more to post a second in case you are a robot or spammer? Wouldn't you think Robert could whitelist longtime members who are clearly neither?

Raises hand. It's freaking annoying. I think my timer is 40 or so seconds. So... for some reason, there are varying levels on a2k's posting gateway, which is really frustrating when one sees obvious spammers and phishers post several concurrent posts mere seconds between posting.
 

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